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Focus of the Mithraeum

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Focus of the Mithraeum
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A detailed view looking towards the focal point of the Mithraeum of the Baths of Mithras.

At the far end is a copy of the statue of the god Mithras slaying the bull (original Here).  This type of figure appears in virtually all well-preserved Mithraeums—either as a statue, a relief, or a painting. There are two square skylights.  The one above the head of Mithras opens so that the sunlight would have illuminated the statue.  Since the nearby public bathhouse would have been in use throughout the day, it is possible that the meetings would have taken place in the early morning hours.

In front of the statue are two podia: one square and the other triangular.  It is not known what they supported—maybe altars?

Behind the statue, to the left, is a doorway that led to one of the service areas of the Roman Bath.

Again, note the benches on the two long sides.  On each of them, it looks like there is a long, narrow, flat bench and this is where the food would be placed.

Behind them, on each side, the sloping part looks like a couch of a triclinium!  The participants in the ritual meal would have reclined there, with their feet toward the wall and food would have been placed on the narrow "bench." Compare these triclinia from Pompeii: Here and Here.

At the far end of the long room, a 5.5-foot tall statue of Mithras slaying the bull was found— along with two podia: one square and the other triangular,

For a great, 18 minute introduction to Mithraism see here on YouTube.

The Mithraeum of the Baths of Mithras was constructed in Regio I, Insula XVII at Ostia, in a service of are of the baths.  It is 50 feet long and 15 feet wide.  The maximum height of the vault is about 6.9 feet. There are two square skylights, one at the south end where a large statue of Mithras killing the bull was found.  It was probably constructed in the third century AD.

It was built to recall the cave in which the deity Mithras killed the sacred bull, releasing the secret of eternal life.